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tv   At This Hour With Kate Bolduan  CNN  May 29, 2017 8:00am-9:01am PDT

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[ playing the national anthem ] ♪ ♪
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>> present. >> present. >> arms.
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♪ [ playing taps ] ♪ [ playing taps ]
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>> ladies and gentlemen, the wreath ceremony is complete. the memorial day service will begin shortly. please move to your seats. thank you. >> hello, i'm anna cabrera, thank you for joining us this hour. the nation pauses to honor the sacrifice of our fallen heroes. memorial day ceremonies are getting under way at arlington national cemetery. a moving moment. the final resting place for more than 400,000 service members and their families, and president trump just presided over his first memorial day service there at the tomb of the unknowns, where he just laid a wreath.
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he will be speaking shortly at the amphitheater. he's already made some remarks this morning via twitter writing today is in memory of the men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice in serving. thank you. god bless your families and god bless the usa. barbara starr is there at arlington national cemetery in section 60 and barbara talk to us about the significance of that section. >> well, ana, this is a place where we come every memorial day when we can and we thank arlington for letting cnn be here and bring you those images. this is the place where so many who have fallen on the battlefield since 9/11 have come to their final resting place. 890 souls killed in action since the 9/11 attacks are buried here. the passage of time, the years, is quite remarkable from latest who have fallen on the
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battlefield just 22 years old. so back on 9/11, very small children on that day. here today we see what we have seen every year we have been here. families, parents, grandparents, small children, battle buddies, they come, they pause, they pay their respects. and of course, this is going on at cemeteries in towns and cities all across this country today, as people remember those who served. it is here, though, that it becomes a national moment. so many of those who were buried here fell in places and have become part of the national conversation. places like fallujah, ramadi, diallah province in iraq, in afghanistan places like kandahar, and if you'll permit me a special shout-out to some of those who fought in the valley of afghanistan, their good buddies. so this is a very special place.
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it's very meaningful. we have seen the same families in some cases year after year. we've watched their children grow up, many of them have come up to me this morning for a bit of a chat. what these families want is what military families want across this country. they just want to make sure they are never forgotten. ana? >> barbara starr there at arlington national cemetery. we see the children, the families walking behind you. we know it is open to the public today, and they and all of us want to share their very best and show their respects and honor those who have fallen giving the ultimate sacrifice for our country for our freedoms barbara starr thank you. stay with us. we will come back to barbara as we tim our special memorial day coverage here at this hour. we'll take a quick break and be back in a moment. ok, let's call his agent. i'm coming over right now.
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will be giving that any moment as soon as he begins his remarks we will take you there live. we are also awaiting remarks from the president, his first remarks since he returned from his nine-day overseas trip and his first memorial day, of course, as commander in chief. we anticipate those remarks here also later this hour. we'll monitor these pictures. you see a huge crowd there at arlington. this day means so much for so many families on a personal level and for our entire country as we honor those who gave their sacrifice, sacrificing their lives for all of us, for our freedom. and we see the vice president is also there in attendance at the ceremony. i want to bring in a couple of guests with us. cnn military analyst retired army lieutenant general mark hurt hurtling. and douglas brinkley. general we salute you, honor your great service for our country as we also reflect on those who have died serving. many american heroes, obviously
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made the ultimate sacrifice under your command. what does this day mean to you? >> ana, this is actually a very tough day for most who have seen the sacrifices, who have been with fellow soldiers, airmen, marines, coast guardsmen who have given the ultimate in defense of our country and in support of the constitution. so while a lot of people view this as the start of the summer and a great weekend to have picnics, i suggest that a lot of us who have worn the uniform and seen combat have a lot different approach to this day. there's a lot of soul searching. there's a lot of memories. there's certainly remembering those who served with that died. but there's a reflection, too, of how much more we can do to earn their sacrifices. and that's the message i try and give most americans. while you're enjoying your picnics and your day at the beach take a few moments and recommit yourselves to the service toward america, and toward the service to your fellow humans. >> what do you recommend people
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do? how can we earn this sacrifice? >> there are all sorts of things, ana. they can contribute to organizations, one of our favorites is the program called taps, which takes care of the family members -- >> generally hertling i hate to interrupt you. i want to continue this conversation as soon as we have another moment. we want to listen to the invocation now. >> major general michael l. hallard, military district of washington. executive director, army national military, cemetery program.
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general joseph s. dunford jr., chairman of the joint chiefs of staff. the honorable jim mattis, the secretary of defense. ♪
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>> ladies and gentlemen, the president of the united states. ♪ ♪
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ladies and gentlemen, chaplain austin. >> let us pray. almighty god, prince of peace, you have declared that there is no greater love than to lay down one's life for their friends. today as a nation we physically and symbolically stand among america's sons and daughters, patriots who have given their lives to ensure our freedoms. we pause on this national memorial day to remember them for their sacrifice, and to honor their memory. i pray we may be more aware of just how blessed we are as a nation. as we realize the price that's paid to have and maintain our freedom. we also pray today for families and friends of those who have
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given their lives in service to our nation. we pray that they will be comforted and reassured that the sacrifice of their loved ones is not in vain, and they are not forgotten. lord we ask that you continue to give wisdom to our commander in chief, his administration, our elected officials, and the military leaders as they promote peace throughout our country and around the world. lord, today we have men and women deployed in harm's way and we ask that you will continue to watch over and bless them with strength and courage to be victorious, and we ask that they will come home soon. we thank you, god, for our country and ask that you continue to bless america. we ask these things not of ourselves, but in accordance to your will, and the promise of peace throughout your holy name. as the prince of peace. amen. >> ladies and gentlemen, please join the united states air force band in singing our national anthem.
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♪ [ playing "the national anthem" ] ♪ ♪ playing "the national anthem" ] [ playing "the national anthem" ] ♪
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>> please be seated. ladies and gentlemen, general dunford. >> mr. president, mr. vice president, secretary mattis, distinguished guests, and most importantly, to our gold star families it's an honor to join you this morning in remembrance and reflection. since the founding of our republic more than 42 million americans have stepped forward to serve their country in uniform. their story is one of selflessness, it's one of our congress, and it's one of pure
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commitment. but the story is also one of extraordinary sacrifice. more than 1 million americans who have answered the call to duty gave the last full measure of their devotion so their fellow citizens could live in freedom and raise their children in peace. today we honor the fallen on battlefields that serve as way points in our history. saratoga to gettysburg, bellawood to midway. and to fallujah. we reflect on the enormity of the sacrifice. we reflect on the hopes and the dreams never realized. today we also reflect on the sacrifice to the families left behind. the anguish of parents, spouses, siblings and friends. the sadness of children growing up without their fathers or mothers. and we know that for the families, every day is memorial day. but today we also reflect on
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what's most important about the men and women we honor. we reflect on how they lived. they stood for something larger than themselves. they were people who embodied the most important values and traditions of our nation. we were people who understood that what we have in our country is worth fighting for. and though they were taken from us prematurely they were people who touched our lives. they were people who made a difference. today, if we truly want to honor the fallen from all of our conflicts, we'll do something more than mark their graves with flags and flowers. we'll do something more than deliver remarks and reflect for just a few moments. if we truly want to give meaning to the sacrifice of those who have given all on our behalf, each of us will leave here today determined to find, in some small way, a method of serving our nation and our communities in their honor. if we do that, then i would offer that those of us who were taken from us prematurely will
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be able to look down and know that we truly do remember them. ladies and gentlemen, on behalf of the soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines, and coast guardsmen that are still in uniform, thank you for remembering. >> ladies and gentlemen, listen now as the united states air force band performs america the beautiful. ♪ ♪ playing "america the beautiful"" ]
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♪ oh beautiful for spacious skies ♪ ♪ for amber waves of grain ♪ ♪ for purple mountains' majesty above the fruited plain ♪ ♪ america america ♪ ♪ god shed his grace on thee ♪ ♪ and crown thy good with brotherhood ♪ ♪ from sea to shining sea ♪
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♪ o beautiful for pilgrim feet ♪ ♪ ♪ america america ♪ ♪ god mend thine and crown thy good with brotherhood ♪ ♪ from sea to shining sea ♪ and crown thy good
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with brotherhood ♪ ♪ from sea to shining sea >> ladies and gentlemen, secretary mattis.
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>> they shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old, age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. at the going down of the sun and in the morning, we will remember them. mr. president, mr. vice president, chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, general dunford, gold star families, everyone, we gather here today with a shared attitude of gratitude. 23 centuries ago an old spartan king observed it is not the places that grace men, but men grace the places. today we know that he was right more than a century ago, this 624 acre plot of land was a plantation on the potomac. scenic, but hardly sacred. now these fields hold the
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greatest treasure of our nation, america's courageous dead. those who today we pause to remember. not far from here, lies the marker of oliver wendell holmes jr., a civil war infantry veteran who later rose to be a supreme court justice. holmes said those who serve in our military have hearts that are touched with fire. having known great things, he said, they are content with silence. if you have ever known one of the fallen you've known greatness. but is hard to be content with their silence for we miss them. the empty chair on a holiday. empty every day. the photograph that goes wherever you do. the picture fades so that the person in it does not. their fighting spirit persists,
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passed down through the ranks, their spirit echoes in those who serve today in the air, on land, and at sea. in a world awash with change, some things stand firm, some things are as plato said good and true and beautiful. the kid on the line who never had a chance to grow old will always be there to teach us that suffering has meaning if it is accepted out of love for others. to the families of the fallen, both here and at home, no words will ease your pain. but i beg you let it have meaning. unite your sorrow to their awesome purpose. people do grace places, but people also grace people. we are blessed by our time with those now asleep, the mighty and the gentle. let us share their story with others, then, like the poet, we
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all can say, sleep, soldiers, still in honored rest, your truth and valor wearing, the bravest are the tenderest, the loving are the daring. now ladies and gentlemen, it's my great honor to introduce our commander in chief, president of the united states, donald trump. >> thank you. thank you very much. thank you.
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thank you so much. and thank you, general dunford, secretary mattis, for your moving words, and for your service to our great nation. vice president pence, cabinet secretaries, members of congress, members of the armed forces and veterans, thank you for joining us as we honor the brave warriors who gave their lives for ours. spending their last moments on this earth in defense of this country, and of its people. words cannot measure the depth of their devotion, the purity of their love or the totality of their courage. we only hope that every day we can prove worthy, not only of their sacrifice, and service,
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but of the sacrifice made by the families and loved ones they left behind. special, special people. i especially want to extend our gratitude to secretary john kelly, for joining us today. incredible man. i always like to call him general. he understands more than most ever could or ever will. the wounds and burdens of war, not only did secretary proudly serve in the military for more than 40 years and during many
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hardships, but he and his incredible wife karen have borne the single most difficult hardship of them all, the loss of their son robert in service to our country. robert died fighting the enemies of all civilization in afghanistan. to john, karen, heather, tate, andrea, and the entire kelly family today 300 million american hearts are joined together with yours. we grieve with you, we honor you, and we pledge to you that we will always remember robert, and what he did for all of us. thank you, john.
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the quellkelly family represent military families across the country who carry the burden of freedom on their shoulders. secretary kelly is joined today by his son-in-law jake, a wounded warrior. and the secretary's son johnny will soon leave on his fifth deployment. it is because of families like yours that all of our families can live in safety and live in peace. to every gold star family who honors us with your presence, you lost sons and daughters, husbands and wives, mothers and fathers. they each had their own names, their own stories, their own beautiful dreams. but they were all angels sent to
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us by god, and they all share one title in common, and that is the title of hero. real heroes. so they were here only a brief time before god called them home. their legacy will endure forever. general douglas macarthur once said that the soldier who is called upon to offer and to give his life for his country is the noblest development of mankind. here at this hallowed shrine, we honor the noblest among us, the men and women who paid the ultimate price for victory and for freedom. we pay tribute to those brave souls who raced in to gunfire,
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roared into battle, and ran into hell to face down evil. they made their sacrifice not for fame, or for money, or even for glory, but for country. we are privileged to be joined today by a man whose life demonstrates the values of service and sacrifice, senator bob dole, here with his wife, senator elizabeth dole.
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senator dole fought bravely in world war ii, and was severely wounded by german fire. in just a few weeks bob will be celebrating his 94th birthday. and bob, i know i speak for millions of grateful americans when i say, thank you. thank you, bob. we thank you not only for your service, but for helping us to remember your fallen comrades. and the countless american patriots who gave their lives in the second world war. since the first volley of gunfire in the revolution, brave americans in every generation have answered the call of duty,
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and won victory for freedom in its hour of need. today a new generation of american patriots are fighting to win the battle against terrorism, risking their lives to protect our citizens from an enemy that uses the murder of innocents to wage war on humanity itself. we are joined today by the wife of specialist christopher horton, who rests on these so beautiful grounds, as jane tells us chris was a man who loved this country with every part of his being. in 2008, chris enlisted in the oklahoma army national guard. he trained as a sniper, becoming known as one of the best shots
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anywhere, at any time. he was a talented, tough guy. while chris was in the national guard, he was also a volunteer police officer. and everything he did he was thinking about how he could serve god, serve his family, and serve his country. in 2011, he deployed for the first time to afghanistan. chris knew his job was one of the most dangerous there was. but he was determined to go after the enemy at any cost to himself. his missions helped target and kill terrorists who sought to destroy innocent people. just three months into his first deployment chris was near the pakistan border, trying to eliminate an enemy cell that was
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doing so much damage and that was planting deadly roadside bombs against his unit and the units of many others. standing watch with his comrades, he died in the ensuing gun battle with enemy forces. chris sacrificed his life to protect his fellow soldiers, and to protect all americans. he was awarded the purple heart, and bronze star, for his courage. at only 26 years old, chris secured his place in our hearts for eternity. jane, america grieves with you. our whole entire nation sends you our support, our strength,
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and our deep, deep love. you lost your husband, and america lost a hero. and together we will preserve his memory, today, tomorrow, and always. thank you, jane. thank you, jane. thank you, jane.
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thank you, jane. we're also joined today by david and rose baez, the parents of major andrew baez. as a boy, andrew dreamed of the chance to attend the united states military academy at west point. he worked hard. he earned that chance. and he graduated at the top of his class. he became the commander of a special team leading his fellow soldi soldiers, hurtling into dangers and unknown territory. about this time last year, andrew was sent on his third combat deployment. this time he went to afghanistan. on november 3rd, he was one of
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ten special forces operators to land by helicopter near a taliban safe haven in northern afghanistan. they trekked through a mile of waist deep mud, and climbed steep -- before finally reaching the village that they wanted to reach. there, a night-long battle ensued. andrew and his team fought off wave after wave after wave of enemy fighters. a grenade detonated, and as the taliban began to surround the americans, and afghan forces, andrew ran through the smoke and through the hail of bullets, to rescue an afghan soldier. in the midst of this torrent of gunfire and danger, andrew worked heroically to open a
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gateway and get his men to safety risking his life to save theirs. and he did it. unbelievably he did it. but in saving those lives, andrew was killed right then and there by enemy fire. andrew has since ban warded the silver star for gallantry in battle. his parents, david and rose, we stand in awe of your son and his courageous efforts. on behalf of the american people, i express to you our everlasting gratitude for what your son did for his country, for his comrades, and for all of us. andrew's father has said that he holds onto the promise of joshua
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1 versus 9, the lord your god will be with you wherever you go. thank you. thank you. thank you. thank you. what a man he was.
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to every gold star family, god is with you. and your loved ones are with him. they died in war so that we could live in peace. i believe that god has a special place in heaven for those who lay down their lives so that others may live free, from fear, and this horrible oppression. now, let us pledge to make the most of that freedom that they so gallantly and brilliantly fought for, and they died to protect. let us also pledge to tell the stories of robert, chris, andrew, and all of america's fallen warriors today, and for
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the next 1,000 years. and while we cannot know the extent of your pain, what we do know is that our gratitude to them and to you is boundless and undying. boundless. and undying. we'll always be there. thank you. their stories are now woven into the soul of our nation. into the stars and stripes on our flag, and into the beating hearts of our great, great people.
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today we also hold a special vigil for heroes whose story we cannot tell, because their names are known to god alone. the unknown soldiers. we do not know where they came from. who they left behind. or what they hoped to be. but we do know what they did. they fought and they died in a great and noble act of loyalty and love to their families, and to our country. in a letter written that is now famous, one civil war soldier captured it all, and for all time. he wrote to his wife, if i do not return, my dear sarah, never
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forget how much i love you, nor that when my last breath escapes me on the battlefield, it will whisper your name. that is the love we hear whispering throughout this sacred place and from every tombstone on these hallowed grounds. it is the love that binds this earth beneath us and bleeds from the hearts of all of those who died so that we might live free. we can never replace them. we cannot repay them. but we can always remember. and today, that is what we are doing. we remember. words cannot wipe away the tears or bring back those smiling
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faces. but if americans just take the time to look into your eyes, and tell you how much we thank you, and how dearly we pray for you, and how truly test then hopefully you can find solace through your pain. and every time you see the sun rise over this bless ed land, please know your brave sons and daughters pushed away the night and delivered for us all that great and glorious dawn. thank you. god bless you. god bless our fallen heroes. god bless their families. god bless our military. and god bless the united states of america.
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thank you. [ cheers and applause ] zbllgz laulg >> announcer: ladies and gentlemen, please remain standing for the playing of taps and the benediction.
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♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
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i receive the benediction. oh mighty and mersful god, grant all of us grace and peace and a strong recollection of this national memorial day obser observeance. may this day be etched into our hearts and always cause us to be thankful for your blessings and their sacrifices. they shall grow not old as we that are left grow old. age shall not weary them nor the years condemn. after going down of the sun and in the morning we will remember them. amen. >> announcer: ladies and gentlemen, please remain in place until the president has departed and the colors are retired.
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[ cheers and applause ] >> we've been watching special memorial day coverage as the president addressed the nation and particular military men and women and also especially the families of those who have lost loved ones who have died fighting for this country, for democracy. a moving moment certainly. about 20 minute speech in which he mentioned his secretary john kelly who also lost a son in combat and another son getting ready to deploy and he brought up many stories of other family
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members who are in the audience of those who have gone on to serve and who have died the ultimate sacrifice. i want to bring back cnn military analyst retired army lieutenant general mark hertling and cnn presidential historian douglas brinkley as we continue to look at live pictures of the president at arlington national cemetery. your reaction to the words we heard from the president today. >> i'd sum it up by saying this was first of all as it always is every year, i've been to many of these ceremonies. very solemn . it pays tribute to the sacrifice. you have to take the combination of the three speakers together. chairman dunsford gave an excellent presentation in terms of reminding people that they have to earn what these young men and women sacrifice in giving their life. secretary mattis talked a little bit about the history, so he went from earning it to historical references of men of
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arms of all ages and throughout the years, and then the president actually pulled together some very good memories of individuals who served. their actions, their history, their families. so it tied together i think very well in terms of what these kind of ceremonies are supposed to be all about. in combination with the laying of the wreath at the tomb of the unknowns. this is a special very day for veterans and their families. there were not only a lot of gold star families in the audience but a lot of veterans. it was just a very moving ceremony. >> this is almost always a unifying issue no matter what party a president represents. they always promise unconditional support. what do you see as the distinctions between this president compared to past presidents in this arena? >> well, as you suggest, they all love the armed forces. i mean, talk about washington,
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d.c. being broken or politics being broken, but nobody thinks our armed forces are broken. memorial day is a sacred moment. i thought today's ceremony was like it usually is, very well done. everything perfectly choreographed. i thought the length was the right speech. it reminded me of the way ronald reagan did the events, the way he chose a few stories of recent fallen warriors and, you know, paid homage to them. there was an interesting call out to former senator bob dole who's still in his 90s. was once the republican nominee for president back in 1996 against bill clinton. what was missing today was i thought there would have been a mention to john f. kennedy. this is his 100th birthday. kennedy's grave and the eternal flame is just a stone's
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throwaway and john glenn who was recently buried in arlington and is tied to the kennedy years. i thought there might be a mention of that, but there wasn't. i thought the president did, as most presidents do, a very appropriate job today. >> general, i want to come back to our discussion prior to the president's comments. i think it was so important what you were saying at that moment which was talking about how us as americans, as citizens, and just everyday people can do more to honor the sacrifice that so many have made before us. >> americans like to give money to organizations. there are certainly quite a few out there they can give money to and support. and i mentioned taps, operation gratitude, the uso. there are a lot of nonprofits that you can contribute to. they're on the web. but more importantly, and this is the point that i'd like to emphasize on memorial day, it's
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every day common decency toward one another. it's understanding the values of our nation, of integrity and humility and empathy, service to others. that's what all of these service members died for. and making a difference not only in your community, but in the nation and in the world. that's what really most service members serve for. they serve for their kurccountr but they understand how much they do to contribute to safety and security. these young men and women who are buried under the stones at arlington and all the cemeteries throughout the world, they understood that. they were fieghting for somethig bigger than themselves and diagnose for a cause greater than themselves. every american should take it upon themselves to say not only how do i contribute money but through actions. that's the most important thing on this day. >> all right. thanks to both of you for being part of our coverage. as we continue to see these live images, the president just
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wrapping up his remark at arlington national scemetery. we continue to honor those who have died on this memorial day. i want to welcome our viewers as we roll into the top of next hour. we are watching a number of developing stories on this memorial day. moments ago president trump paying tribute to america's fallen soldiers there at arlington national cemetery. this is the video from earlier where he laid the wreath at the tomb of the unknown soldier. plus the president's son-in-law jared kushner is facing new scrutiny over allegations he discussed setting up a secret communications channel with russia. and more trouble surrounding golf star tiger woods. the 14-time major champion has been arrested for alleged dui in florida. we'll have those details. on this memorial day, as we honor the men and women who sacrifice their lives for this


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